Toronto Blue Jays holding Vladimir Guerrero Jr. out of World Baseball Classic

The Toronto Blue Jays are being cautious with Vladimir Guerrero Jr.

Their star first baseman had felt soreness in his right knee while running the bases during Friday’s spring training game. Fortunately for both sides, an MRI revealed that he is just dealing with inflammation and does not have any structural damage. For now, the plan is to just keep Guerrero off his feet and let him rest before he is re-evaluated.

Toronto Blue Jays make right move with Vladimir Guerrero Jr.

This issue could not have happened at a worse time for Guerrero. He had been scheduled to join the Dominican national team for the World Baseball Classic on Saturday. Instead, Keegan Matheson from reported that Guerrero will be kept out of the WBC, allowing him to recover in time for the regular season without any pressure.

The Blue Jays need Guerrero at full strength if they are going to knock the Yankees off of their perch in the AL East. He put together another strong showing in 2022, posting a .274/.339/.480 batting line with 32 homers and 35 doubles in his 706 plate appearances. As he will turn 24 years old before the season, he still has a long career ahead of him.

His future likely includes eventually getting to play in the WBC. Guerrero will be entering his theoretical prime the next time the tournament occurs. He is going to get his chances to represent the Dominican Republic on the international stage. However, at this point, it is best for him to rest and be ready for Opening Day, especially as the Blue Jays are looking to make a deep run in the postseason.

The Toronto Blue Jays are holding Vladimir Guerrero Jr. out of the World Baseball Classic. It is the right move for their 2023 hopes.

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